Handtufted carpets use high quality wool so the finished product looks and wears much like a hand-knotted carpet. Unlike a hand-knotted carpet, a hand-tufted carpet is created without tying knots. Making a handtufted area carpet takes a fraction of the time to make, therefore greatly reducing the cost. As a result, hand-tufted carpets are very affordable area rugs. Designers choose handtufted carpets as they offer total flexibility in design, pattern, shape, size, texture, and the number of colors can all be specified to exactly fulfill each project's special needs. Handtufted carpets and rugs provide an ultra-luxurious custom look used for the most important public and private spaces such as lobby areas, promenades, grand staircases, and even ballrooms in 6 and 7 star hotels can be fitted with custom rugs produced in seamless widths as wide as 39 feet. Handtufted carpet can be used as an area rug, inlaid into hard surfaces or installed wall to wall. These wool carpets are made with a tool called a "tufting gun." Loops of wool are pushed through a backing that has been imprinted with the overall design. When the carpet maker is through with this process another foundation, called a scrim is applied with latex glue. When this dries, the final protective cloth backing is applied. The last step is to shear the carpet so that all of the loops on the top of the carpet are cut, which in turn creates the pile. Hand-tufted carpets can withstand high traffic, and will begin to wear out after 12 to 20 years of use. High traffic areas include hallways, family room and entryway. Medium traffic areas include the dining room and home office. Low traffic areas include bedrooms and formal living room.